Boston Calling Day One

Sia was absolutely incredible.  Or rather she was INCREDIBLE!  The girl with an elastic heart who swings from a chandelier, who only cries when her heart is breaking, who is unstoppable, is truly one of the most fascinating artists I have ever witnessed live, and especially in the last few years, I have seen a lot of memorable acts, especially over my three previous Boston Callings, my many forays into The Green River Festival and all the other awesome stuff I have experienced, but never anything quite like this.  For a singer who refuses to show her face when she performs she is surprisingly compelling, and the facelessness is only part of it.  I also don’t think Sia can make a bad song either, but that’s neither here nor there.  Even though there wasn’t a band supporting her, or at least that we could say, there was nothing lacking.  It was solid gold, truly worthy of headliner status.  She just stood there and sang, while modern dance magic happened before our eyes, even featuring celebrity guests no less.  Now that is cool.  There were ever present, the feelings of not being good enough, of feeling alone, or useless, of feeling like something was holding you back, represented in an omnipresent pair of disembodied hands draped over someone’s shoulder.  There was also some fancy camera projection work, the likes of which I have never seen in person.  The music truly came alive before our eyes, it was like watching a live music video unfold.  To be able to transcend an art form, to be able to not just feel the music, but to see it, that is something I will never forget.  Day two awaits right now, so I will be back at a later time to discuss my thoughts on that.

Cheers!

Newbury Comics..

in my town is closing.  I am beyond saddened by this news, but less saddened by the fact that the company isn’t disappearing.  Nowhere else in town can I get such fun weird kitschy crap, music, and comics.  And to a less extent movies.  At least for movies we still have Target, Best Buy, Walmart, etc. But that isn’t usually nearly as much fun as shopping here.  And of course, having great love for my independent record store/comic store, I am going to buy as much stuff as I possibly can from this location between now and closing.  As can be imagined we are currently inundated with all kinds of stuff because of this.  But a bargain is a bargain after all, especially on fun stuff and important things like music which is truly what moves us all. Support your local businesses always y’all.

8 Days Till Boston Calling!!

I’m beyond psyched that it is so near.  Sia is gonna be breathtakingly amazing I’m sure.City and Colour’s new album has blown me away with amazingness, and I was pumped to see them already.  Borns, and their “Electric Love,” will surely light up the stage. I am interested to see what Disclosure does for a live set, whether it will be an all out dance party, an actual band, how they play the songs featuring all their guest artists that truly drive their music?  So many questions, answers will appear soon won’t they?   And of course Boston Calling wouldn’t be complete without a super fun crass and irreverent band like the time we saw Fidlar last year.  So I am super stoked to see The Front Bottoms.

Yet Another Interesting Album by Radiohead

It’s certainly more an In Rainbows kind of album then a King of Limbs kind of album.  I think it has the most in common with Kid A or maybe Amnesiac, but a little more ethereal.  It’s more spacy, and it doesn’t float out of my head the way King Of Limbs did and still does.  It’s definitely not a return to their more raucous territory the way Hail To The Thief was, and it’s certainly not radio radio the way the first couple albums were.  But at it’s heart it is Radiohead through and through, especially in the fact that you can’t pin at down as one thing, or similar to a specific thing.  It’s definitely a return to a more lyrical approach, and a more densely instrumented sound. I know I used that wrong, but anyone reading gets the idea.  My first listen has sort of relegated this to background noise, but I really love what I here.  And the guitar work is just as gorgeous as anything off of Ok Computer was.  The song, “Tinker Tailor Soldier Sailor Rich Man Poor Man Beggar Thief,”  reminds me a lot of “Pyramid Song,” or even “Paranoid Android,” but even then it’s still something that can’t be pinned down, because I’m hearing shades of “Reckoner,” “15 step,” and others all inside this one track.  “Burn The Witch” is like a mellower “Hail To The Thief” track. “Daydreaming” would feel right at home on Kid A, but also sounds like it would fit as a B-side to King of Limbs or In Rainbows. “Desert Island Disk,” sounds like something you might hear on an album by Alt-J, who many have called the new Radiohead oddly enough.  But it also would fit perfectly in between any two tracks off of Ok Computer. “Full Stop” is really the closest thing there is on here to a straight up rock track.  But here is where Radiohead never ceases to confuse me.  Almost every track on here, not only the ones I mentioned could fit pretty much anywhere in the middle of Radiohead’s very eclectic song catalog from the past 20 plus years So my question to you is this:  how many of these are brand new tracks, as opposed to bits and pieces of the past as it were?  When you listen to music you are listening to the past anyway, just like when you see the moon’s reflection.  The name of the album is A Moon Shaped Pool, so maybe that is part of the concept of this concept album.  And oddly enough, the album ends with a re-working of a song that has been part of their catalog for a number of years, but has never once appeared on any of their studio albums.  They truly know how to come full circle.

Bottoms Up!

Took A Walk

Take A Walk- Passion Pit

I ambled down to the library to return some of my items, and I thought about how much I used to love the easy access to the streets of downtown back in Keene at college time, and just how relaxing it was to just wander through different routes and passages all leading to the same places.  I guess it’s true what they say, “All roads lead to home,”  or was it Rome?  Oh well, I’m not one to turn a cliché in a way that may come off as cliché.  If that is cliché to say, well I’m sorry.  I mean I really am not sorry, especially not for dropping that nice little video gem in the midst of my blog.  But anyways, I took my walk and although we live in downtown in a moderately populous city, the air is crisp and clean, and there are trees just about everywhere.  It also seems that almost every street in this part of town intersects, and it is nearly impossible for me to get lost.  I could feel the air, the sun, the early summer breeze in my stylish haircut, and it was nice, all of it.  The busy streets were right there, but on my walking route, it was like I had entered a new and different place.  Everything moved in a loop back to my point of origin.  At no point in my walk, excepting the very end, did I retread my steps.  What was familiar or old hat, was new again.  What was new was amazing.  Like I said, the sunny days really photosynthesize my piece of mind and stimulate my artsy side. Mwahaha, I rhymed without even meaning to.  But that’s really all I have to say.  Taking a walk works wonders for body and soul. Go do it, I guess.

Also Good for What Ails You

It’s Back

The sun has returned to us this week, and now that it is my day off, I couldn’t be more glad of that fact.  The sun is back.  The warmth and joy of Spring is back.  The hint of Summer is back.  Our good moods are back, and our motivations, and faith in our abilities to succeed are all back back back back back.  And Radiohead’s new album has arrived!!!!  I am overjoyed to have my first listen of “A Moon Shaped Pool,” at some point this day, and I’m sure it will not disappoint.  My brief dive into it last night proved that it does have more to offer than “King Of Limbs, ” which was  a great album, don’t get me wrong, but I like that the new album is a concept album that’s actually focused more on a legit concept than the previous endeavor.  But regardless, it will be a delight to the ears I am sure.

Only a couple short weeks till Boston Calling VII, and I am pumped up about that for sure.  Sia, Disclosure, City And Color, Borns, The Front Bottoms,  Miike Snow, Odesza, and many others are going to be awesome I am sure.  Boston Calling has never disappointed in variety of artists and styles represented, and has also hardly disappointed in quality of performers and performances, though certainly Brand New left much to be desired.  But the postives of the experience outweigh the negatives.  We fell in love with bands and artists we wouldn’t have known otherwise, and saw way more artists that we already loved, that we probably wouldn’t have the opportunity without the festival that kicks off the summer in the best possible way.  The line-up this time is much less known to me, to be pleasantly surprised is also a pleasant surprise.

Well today folks, think Spring, and dream Summer.  Take a walk, throw a disc, jam out to some good tunes, open your windows, fling open your doors, and throw out your arms to the gift that is today, and run with it.  I don’t care if you have work or not, you do get out of work at some point right?  Get out and see that big beautiful place we call the world.

I know I’m telling you this from my apartment floor on a computer screen, but once I am done dropping these words in front of your faces, I am going outside myself.  So there!

 

Bottoms Up!

Who Else Thinks It’s Awesome?

Prince was in that amazing New Girl episode from a few seasons ago, because he explicitly asked to be on the show?  That’s amazing.  And that is fandemonium right there.  Prince continues to impress us even in things revealed of him after his death.  Long Live Prince.